How to Catch Errors, Improve Patient Safety and Reduce Readmissions
Comprehensive Pharmacy Services customizes and implements hospital medication reconciliation program to drive transitions of care performance.
Transitions of care present critical opportunities to tap telepharmacy services in order to catch medication errors, improve patient safety and reduce patient readmissions. A recent University of California study revealed when pharmacists engage patients with credible information regarding proper use of their medications, medication-related ER visits and unnecessary readmissions declined.
That premise was the basis for this Telepharmacy Case Study developed by CPS Telepharmacy Services for the JFK Medical Center.
During transitions of care, patients often receive new medications or have changes made to their existing medications, typically upon hospital admission, transfer from
one unit to another during hospitalization, or discharge from hospital to home or
another facility. Caregivers at these transition points may inadvertently omit needed
medications, unnecessarily duplicate existing therapies, or contain incorrect dosages.
These discrepancies place patients at risk for adverse drug events, which have been
shown to be one of the most common types of adverse events after hospital discharge
and a key driver of hospital readmissions.
This case study targeted the JFK Medical Center’s Core Measure patient population units and included: congestive heart failure, pneumonia, COPD and myocardial infarction. The team built an admission and discharge medication reconciliation process that delivered a more complete picture of inpatient, outpatient and retail prescription history, enabling more accurate reconciliation, variance identification and reporting. CPS used a proprietary medication reconciliation process utilizing a national pharmacy claims database, medical lists and chart information. CPS pharmacists made evidence-based disease state intervention recommendations to the JFK care team, provided discharge medication education to patients and provided post-discharge support.
The program caught medication errors, improved patient safety and reduced readmissions across a number of the Core Measure units. Beyond the case study, CPS programs have reduced CMS penalties and unscheduled visits to emergency departments and urgent care. Programs also increased early identification of therapy failures post-discharge, enhanced the patient experience, improved clinical outcomes and lowered the cost of care.
Click here to learn more about our telepharmacy services.
Download the full Telepharmacy Case Study here and access 8 Steps to an Effective Medication Management Program.